March 4th, 2012
Who do you think about, when you contemplate great producers? My mind immediately goes to Clement Dodd of Studio One, as well as Berry Gordy of Motown.
Just like they built up their roster of stars: Dodd with Bob Marley and Burning Spear, Gordy with Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye; Kurt Smith has began to work with his peers - the young luminaries of the Oxford scene, such as Sheldon Cadogan.
True Music is the name of the production company and label, that seventeen year old Kurt has set up, to channel his creations through. Which will have established itself somewhat, by the time he completes his music media course, at Oxford and Cherwell College.
He says he enjoys every aspect of the productions; from arranging the session, the marrying of lyric with music, to the engineering, as well as the editing.
When listening to Kurt talk about music, you sense his determination and feel his vibrancy. You get the impression that he’ll continue to go forward. Taking True Music, as far as it can go; remaining true to the reason why.
Sheldon, a star in the local constellation, has been a lyricist since the age of thirteen; a kit drummer since twelve. He cites UK figures such as Hunt and Joe Blax, as influences in his music.
This youth of sixteen years, a construction student at the aforementioned college; enjoys the chance to construct rhythms, to weave in and out of his words. He hopes that his need to express himself, will ignite other young people to do so; whether through music, drama, painting or sculpture.
Knowing that Sheldon is a drummer, I look forward to the day, when he presents me with a recording of a song, with him on cymbals and snare.
Thinking again of great producers, I think of King Tubby, the inventor of dub. Then my thoughts stop at the name Willie Dixon, that icon of blues music. But it’s crucial that we take time, to celebrate our local heroes. To recognise the trying men and to salute them now.
Kurt Smith and Sheldon Cadogon, we say your names with respect.
©Natty Mark Samuels, 2012